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Eco-tourism in China

Xiao Zuo, outdoor adventurer and entrepreneur, represents a growing number of young Chinese interested in exploring their country’s wild places.

Since founding the 54 Traveler tourism company with her husband, she’s organized countless outdoor trips, always emphasizing responsible travel guidelines, like packing out trash and respect for local communities.

Xiao Zuo says she hopes the people who join her excursions will become invested in protecting China’s environment. China’s government has vowed to address environmental concerns after taking a growth-at-all-costs approach during the country’s economic opening.

Listen to the report by Ruth Morris in Hangzhou, China:

Eco-tourism in China

Xiao Zuo

Xiao Zuo combines tourism with environmental protection (Photo: Glen Fu)

Glen Fu

Xiao Zuo works together with her husband, Glen Fu (Photo: Glen Fu)

 

Date

Tuesday 08.10.2013 | 13:48

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Committed to non-violence in East Timor

Life in Timor Leste – Asia’s newest nation – has been hard for many. But the decades of violence hit the children hardest. Twenty-three year old Juliao Amaral Dos Santos knows that as well as anyone -that’s why he’s already spent more than half of his young life devoted to creating a safe place for other kids, working with the organization MAC Children United.

Just barley out of university now, he’s already one of the nation’s brightest young leaders.

Listen to the report by Emily Richmond in Dili, Timor Leste:

Committed to non-violence in East Timor

Santos

Santos organizes a number of classes for youth, including singing, radio production, dance, music, and capoeira (Photo: E. Richmond)

MAC Children United

The participating children range from 3 years old to early 20s (Photo: E. Richmond)

Date

Tuesday 24.09.2013 | 13:34

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Bhutan’s ‘trash guy’

Karma Yonten calls himself a “trash guy,” and one thing is certain: He is enthusiastic about waste. Growing up in Bhutan, a small, not very densely populated Himalayan kingdom, 29-year-old Karma never imagined himself working with garbage. There simply wasn’t any when he was young. But the country is developing fast, which opened up Karma to the idea of starting Bhutan’s first private waste management firm in 2010.
Now he teaches other people in his country all about recycling by offering them money in return for segregated waste and by teaching children about the value of it. He even owns a shirt made out of plastic bottles, especially imported from Japan, to show the extent of what is possible. “It makes them excited about waste,” Karma explains with a smile.
This report was supported in part by the Postcode Loterij Fonds for journalists by Free Press Unlimited.
Listen to the report by Aletta André in Timphu, Bhutan:
Bhutans trash guy
Karma Yonten

Every little bit counts (Photos: Aletta André)

Karma Yonten

Karma is proud of being known as the trash guy (Photo: Aletta André)

Karma Yonten

Karma has received numerous awards for his entrepreneurship and activism (Photo: Aletta André)

Date

Tuesday 17.09.2013 | 12:26

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Keeping women safe in Cambodia

In Cambodia, violence against women is a troubling – and common – concern. Ou Ratanak, witnessed it first-hand when he was growing up. He says his uncle physically abused his aunt, but when he brought it up, he was told to mind his own business.

Now, however, he’s making women’s safety his business. And he’s hoping to tackle the problem for future generations, by heading an organization that works with young adults to change attitudes towards sexual violence.

Listen to the report by Irwin Loy in Phnom Penh, Cambodia:

Keeping women safe in Cambodia

 

Ou Ratanak looks on as a student makes a point during a mock debate held to encourage critical thinking on gender issues among Cambodian youth

Ou Ratanak looks on as a student makes a point during a mock debate held to encourage critical thinking on gender issues among Cambodian youth (Photo: I. Loy)

A student makes his case during a mock debate held to encourage critical thinking on gender issues among Cambodian youth

A student makes his case during a mock debate held to encourage critical thinking on gender issues among Cambodian youth (Photo: I. Loy)

Students discuss gender issues during a mock debate held to encourage critical thinking issues among Cambodian youth

Raising awareness is Ou Ratanak’s first priority (Photo: I. Loy)

Date

Tuesday 13.08.2013 | 11:55

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Education for child workers in Thailand

Child labor is widespread in Thailand, and it’s often young immigrants from Myanmar who are most affected. Many children are forced to drop out of school and work in the physically demanding agriculture and seafood industries. And missing school means they don’t have a chance at getting a good job later on and overcoming poverty. Win Win Wa, 16, was born in Thailand her parents are from Myanmar. After having to work as a child, she was helped into an education by a Thai NGO. Now she’s helping others understand the importance of going to school.

Listen to the report by Nik Martin in Mahachai near Bangkok:

Education for child workers in Thailand

Win Win Wa

Win Win Wa speaks Burmese, so she can help other migrants from Myanmar (Photo: Nik Martin)

 

Date

Tuesday 23.07.2013 | 12:32

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Lesbian activist speaks out in Vietnam

Nguyen Thanh Tam from Saigon is a lesbian. But being gay in Vietnam is not accepted and not easy. She felt so much discrimination and lack of acceptance that she even considered suicide – until she was encouraged by a teacher to come out. She wanted to help others like her avoid the pain and rejection she had felt, so she decided to raise awareness about homosexuality by organizing a gay pride festival, Viet Pride, in Hanoi. It took place last year for the first time. Tam and the other organizers learned a lot from the first event and are working really hard to make Viet Pride 2013 even better.

Listen to the report by Marianne Brown in Hanoi:

Lesbian activist speaks out in Vietnam

Nguyen Thanh Tam

For Nguyen Thanh Tam, coming out took a lot of courage (Photo: Viet Pride)

Viet Pride 2012

Participants at Viet Pride 2012 rode bicycles so the authorities wouldn’t feel threatened (Photo: Marianne Brown)

Viet Pride 2012

The Vietnamese word for a gay person implies that it is a disease – something campaigners are trying to change (Photo: Marianne Brown)

Viet Pride 2012

Campaigners are changing their slogan this year to “Right to love is a human right” (Photo: Marianne Brown)

Here’s the Viet Pride website.

Date

Tuesday 16.07.2013 | 12:02

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Wheelchair-bound teen singer steals Vietnam’s heart

Brittle bone disease means Phuong Anh is restricted to a wheelchair. “Moving is ordinary; I can do more,” says the 16-year-old singer. A finalist in Vietnam’s Got Talent, she is inspiring other handicapped youth.

Listen to the report by Marianne Brown in Hanoi:

Wheelchair-bound teen singer steals Vietnam’s heart

Phuong Anh

Phuong Anh doesn’t let her bone disease keep her from sharing her talent (Photo: Unicef)

Phuong Anh

Phuong Anh performed recently at the launch of the United Nations Children’s Fund report on the state of the world’s children (Photo: Unicef)

Phuong Anh

“Moving is ordinary, and I can do more than that,” says Phuong Anh (Photo: Unicef)

Date

Tuesday 11.06.2013 | 12:44

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Photos for love

Maika uses her photos for change

Maika Elan is a photographer in Hanoi, Vietnam. In her country, homosexuals often face discrimination and many are afraid to be open with their sexuality. In a recent photo project called Pink Choice, Maika candidly portrays homosexual love in an effort to encourage tolerance and start discussion on ending discrimination in Vietnam. The photo series has even provided an opportunity for some gay couples to come out to their families.

Listen to the report by Roberto Tofani in Hanoi, presented by Andreas Grigo:

Photos for love

Copyright: Maika Elan

Copyright: Maika Elan

From the Pink Choice exhibition, copyright: Giulia De Piaggi

From the Pink Choice exhibition, copyright: Giulia De Piaggi

From the Pink Choice exhibition, copyright: Giulia De Piaggi

 

Maika’s website: http://www.maikaelan.com

Maika is respresented by MoST – http://www.mostartists.com/artists/maika-elan/

Date

Thursday 27.12.2012 | 11:53

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The gift of a home

Jayne Kennedy, 24, saw that members of the Orang Asli ethnic minority in Malaysia were living in unstable and unsafe homes. So she got her friends together and founded the organization EPIC Collaborative, which builds sustainable new homes for families there. Jayne used to work in the advertising industry, but found that improving people’s lives, just a few at a time, was a lot more rewarding.

Listen to the report by Subir Che Selia near Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia:

The gift of a home

Jayne isn’t afraid to get her hands dirty

EPIC has already found lots of volunteers

Some people are baldy in need of a roof over their heads

The new houses completely change the residents’ lives

Learn more about EPIC Collaborative on their website.

Date

Tuesday 27.11.2012 | 12:43

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Empowering Chinese kids with books

Mao Ju, 29, was concerned when she found out that many Chinese children don’t read for fun. She founded a free library in Beijing, for migrant children in particular, to help them discover the pleasure of reading. She involves the kids in the management of the library and encourages them to express their own opinions on the library blog.

Listen to the report by Gaia Manco in Beijing:

Empowering Chinese kids with books

Mao Ju

Mao Jugoes over the blog with a young helper

A young reader in Beijing

A young reader in Beijing

Mao Ju's library

A glimpse into the small library

Gaia Manco

The kids enjoyed reading with reporter Gaia Manco, too

Check out the blog that the kids at the library write every day.

Date

Tuesday 18.09.2012 | 11:58

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